Instagram is one of the most popular social media apps to ever be created. At this time, it’s used for media sharing, entertainment, networking, business promotion, small businesses, and more, and it’s utilized by over 1 billion individuals.
As Instagram has grown, so too has its share over the market. These days, the platform is filled with social media influencers and untold numbers of users that make it a perfect spot for promotional events and sales marketing. If you’re an Instagram influencer or have a business and want to leverage Instagram’s unique reach an audience for your goals, you should be aware of some secret features that might help you engage with your audience and boost content stickiness.
Before we get into the real secret stuff, let’s go over some basics that all Instagram influencers and brand managers should already be leveraging for success:
- Use Instagram effects! Instagram is loaded with all kinds of features that can make your content or stories more unique compared to the crowd. Make videos, GIFs, use various filters or stickers, whatever is necessary to keep your followers hooked on your content.
- Make a good profile. Instagram has tons of people all trying to win the influencing and marketing game. Your profile should be unique but also demonstrate your brand’s personality or goals effectively.
- Give behind-the-scenes looks. People, especially Instagram followers, love to feel like they’re in the know or have access to backstage information. It might be a good idea to give out special videos every now and again that shows how your content is made. This will, in turn, make your followers feel special.
- Use hashtags effectively. Creating your own unique hashtags, as well as utilizing existing and currently booming ones, are smart ways to increase engagement for your brand across the Instagram platform and help you gather new followers.
- Collaborate with others. Instagram is more successful if you work with other influencers and brands. Consider joining in an impromptu partnership by supporting one another’s content. Everyone wins.
- Think about your content critically. Instagram provides lots of analytical tools you should be leveraging to analyze what your audience looks for and what they like the most. You can then create content tailored to their expectations for greater success.
The Hidden Features of Instagram You Have to Know About
QR Codes and Nametags
On Instagram, users can create scannable images called nametags. When others scan these nametags through the application, that image will direct the user to your Instagram profile. To make things better, you can customize this image with different colours, pictures, backgrounds, emojis, and more.
Getting the nametag fixed up is similar to how you would set up a QR code, although it all takes place exclusively within the Instagram app. You can use a free online QR code generator if you want to get a jumpstart on making your own name tag. As a plus side, QR codes generated in this manner can be scanned with any smartphone camera without having to open the Instagram app.
Ultimately, you should be using QR codes for marketing and for getting your Instagram profile out into the real world. You can print out dozens of them and stick them in places like telephone poles or put them in your store so that users can stop by your physical location and visit your Instagram profile later. You can even put QR codes on your merchandise!
Transform Your Posts Into Ads
This tip is primarily aimed at influencers or those with small businesses on Instagram. Advertisements are the bread and butter for any marketing effort, but you don’t have to use the built-in promotion button that Instagram provides. Instead, you can use the ad managing tool on the Instagram app and create a customized advertisement out of any Instagram post currently on your profile.
This has several advantages. As an example, any engagement you generate from that ad will be transferred to the post itself, allowing you to boost your profile’s engagement and rating with Instagram’s algorithms instantaneously. This can even help you improve the visibility of posts that are currently rising in the rankings. It’s a great way to channel traffic back through your own profile and advertise for your content at the same time.
Use “Shoppable” Tags
If you already have an online business, you can use social media and shoppable tags to promote your services or products. These tags are special price tags you can attach to various Instagram content dumps or posts. Basically, you just mention a short explanation of whatever product you want to advertise for, along with its price. This will redirect anyone who clicks on it to the shopping page, allowing them to buy your item straight from Instagram instead of having to change apps or browsers.
You can easily make these tags by linking your Facebook page (for your business) to your Instagram account and then upload pictures of various products or services like a catalog. This is advantageous because it minimizes the number of steps people need to take to buy your product, which always helps with user engagement.
Unfollowing… but Not
There may come a time when you need to unfollow certain users or brands, especially after you’ve outgrown them and are starting to blow up in popularity. But unfollowing someone usually comes with that sting of hesitation where you wonder if it would be rude to actually hit the unfollow button.
There’s no need to worry. You can use the mute feature inherent to the Instagram app to unfollow accounts that are no longer relevant or needed for your growth without actually unfollowing them. This blocks their stories or posts, or both depending on your settings, and prevents their content from showing up in your feed or stories. It’s an excellent way to control the content you want to see without hurting anyone’s feelings.
Request and Use a Verification Badge
Anyone looking to be a successful influencer or brand should be using verification badges. These are similar to the blue checkmarks used by Twitter, and they mark your account as authentic relative to your personality or brand. It basically confirms that your profile is actually being used by the real you.
Some people think that these badges show up automatically, but you actually have to request the badge for your profile from your account page. You’ll also need to provide some photo identification from your local government.
After you’ve applied, Instagram will have to review your profile. Occasionally, you might run into a little trouble if Instagram denies the request, and you might need to reapply for the badge. But you should eventually follow through even if it takes a while, as the badge demonstrates confidence in your platform from Instagram. It also lets people know that they can trust your Instagram profile as an official source for your products or content.
All in all, Instagram has the potential to be the best social media platform for content marketing and product promotion. Using all of its features to their maximum extent is the best way to make your profile stand out and succeed in this competitive market. Good luck!